Tips to take better care of your teeth

Brush Your Teeth

The most obvious step is brushing. You need to brush your teeth at least twice a day, once in the morning and once before bedtime. Brushing your teeth will help remove the bacterial plaque that can cause tooth decay and numerous periodontal diseases. But for it to be effective, you need to use the right tools and techniques.

Brushing too aggressively or using hard-bristled toothbrushes can only hurt your teeth and make them more sensitive. The American Dental Association (ADA) suggests using a soft-bristled toothbrush and changing it every 3 months. All the better if the toothbrush has a special tongue cleaner. For your toothpaste, choose one that contains the recommended 1350-1500 ppm of fluoride.

To brush your teeth efficiently, hold your toothbrush at a 45º angle pointed toward your gum line. Apply slight pressure and brush your teeth in circular motions starting from the back to clean the vulnerable hard-to-reach areas. Cover each quadrant of your mouth for about 30 seconds and make sure to brush the inner, outer, and chewing surfaces of your teeth. Then move on to your tongue because if left unclean, it can lead to bad breath and other oral health problems. Don’t rinse your mouth right after you’re done brushing because that will wash away the fluoride that’s there to protect your teeth. Spit instead.

One more thing that is considered in the best dental care guide is your toothbrush holder. According to the National Sanitation Foundation, your toothbrush holder is among the top household items occupied with germs. So make sure to wash it at least once a week.

Don’t Forget to Floss

According to both ADA and CDC, flossing is a must in any oral hygiene routine and the best dental care guides always mention it. Brushing is only about%60 effective because a toothbrush cannot reach between your teeth, especially if they’re very close together. By flossing, you can remove the bacteria trapped between your teeth, stimulate your gums, and reduce inflammation in those areas. That’s why flossing is just as important as brushing and you have to do it at least once a day.

To do this efficiently, take 18 inches of dental floss, wrap the ends around your fingers and place it between your teeth. Curve it around one tooth and gently move it in a rubbing motion to get the debris out. Continue one tooth at a time and make sure to floss your back teeth as well.

If you find it too hard to use traditional flosses, there are easier alternatives at drugstores like ready-to-use flossers and floss picks. These tools can be especially helpful for children and older people.

Visit a Dentist

Even if you follow the best dental care guide and have a perfect oral hygiene routine, you still need to visit your dentist regularly. You should plan a checkup every 6 months, more if your dentist thinks you need it or if you notice a difference in your oral health. So try to get familiar with your mouth to be able to detect any abnormalities like cuts, spots, and swellings. You should do this especially if you’re a smoker because you have a higher risk of oral cancer.

During your visits, the dentist will perform a routine examination, looking for cavities and other problems, clean the plaque and hardened tartar from your teeth, and decide when your next visit needs to be.
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